Virginia Tech’s Robert Weiss, who studies the response of the physical environment to tsunami generated by earthquakes, is available to media outlets interested in Wednesday’s powerful undersea earthquake that struck north of New Zealand.

“A 7.7 is a pretty strong earthquake,” said Weiss. “Gauge locations are coming in and there seems to be a small-medium tsunami, the elevations of which are not bad. Still the associated currents from waves can cause significant damages in ports, harbors, and marinas.”

“There could always be aftershocks, but they are most likely smaller,” Weiss added.

The earthquake struck in the South Pacific, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said, sparking a tsunami warning for New Zealand, New Caledonia, Vanuatu and other nations in the region.

About Weiss

Robert Weiss examines the impact of coastal hazards in the geologic past, today and in the future. His work analyzes how climate change and sea-level rise could change the nature and impacts of coastal hazards in coming years. He develops computer models and uses data analytics to translate the geologic record of coastal hazards into insights that improve the understanding of coastal hazards in the past and today. Weiss is an associate professor of natural hazards in the College of Science’s Department of Geosciences.

Schedule an interview

To secure a live or recorded interview with Robert Weiss, contact Bill Foy by email, or by phone at 540-998-0288.

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